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Bath County News - Outlook
Owingsville, Kentucky
July 26, 2012     Bath County News - Outlook
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July 26, 2012

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News Outlook YOUr Hometown Newspaper July 26, 2012 -11 arpra nprescr Just days after a land- Conway as well as repre- have nothing to fear. The mark prescription drug abuse law took effect, Governor Steve Beshear ioined lawmakers and medical providers to re- port the law has already ef- fected changes in the med- ical field and positioned Kentucky as a national leader in battling prescrip- tion abuse. House Bill 1 (HB1), sponsored by House Speaker Greg Stumbo, passed in a special legis- lative session this spring. The bill included multiple elements to prevent the abuse and diversion of pre- scription drugs and to en- hance law enforcement's tools to investigate illegal prescribing practices. 'q'he enforcement of this bill began just a couple of days ago, and yet we already know that four 'pain management clinics' in Kentucky have waved the white flag and notified us they will shut their doors," said Gov. Beshear. "We know that more than 9,000 medical providers have signed up for electronic prescription monitoring just since this law passed in April - more than doubling the number registered. The word is out. Kentucky is deadly serious about stopping this scourge of prescrip- tion drug abuse, and now we have some of the stron- gest tools in the country to make that happen." Gov. Beshear was joined by Attorney General Jack Wildcats picked sentatives from medical li- censure boards, advocacy groups and law enforce- ment organizations, for to- day's announcement. HB1 expands the Kentucky All Schedule Prescription Electronic Reporting (KASPER) sys- tem, the state's prescrip- tion monitoring system, by requiring all prescription providers of controlled substances to register. It requires pain manage- ment clinics to be owned by a licensed medical prac- titioner, and requires pro- fessional licensure boards to investigate prescribing complaints immediately. The legislation allows for better coordination be- tween health regulators and law enforcement to ad- dress problems of abuse Finally, elements of HB1 will help prevent Kentucky from becoming a source state for prescription pills. According to Kentucky's Drug Control Policy Of- rice, nearly 1,000 Kentuck- ians die every year from drug overdoses - an annu- al fatality rate that exceeds deaths from car accidents. More than 5,000 overdose patients are admitted to hospitals annually. "Let's be very clear - if you need a prescription for a controlled substance for a legitimate medical condi- tion, you have nothing to . fear. You'll get your medi- cine. For doctors who wor- ry their ability to prescribe will be compromised, you law is built to protect valid prescribing," said Gov. Beshear. "But ff you're doctor-shopping, buying extra pills for recreational use, or prescribing pills for cash, you'd better change your vocation or change your location, because we're coming after you." "Prescription drug abuse is killing Kentuck- ians. Three people will die today from prescription drug overdoses. I believe the provisions in House Bill i will save the lives of our friends, our neighbors and our family members," said Attorney General Jack Conway. 'q'he provi- sions in this law will help shut down rogue clinics and providers who are poi- soning people. I appreciate those in the medical com- munity who have 'joined with us as responsible pro- viders to be a part of the solution instead of part of the problem." ,"House Bill 1 and the emergency regulations will help stop tragic loss of life to drug abuse. We are working closely with medical professionals to ensure that legitimate pain management eases are not adversely affected," said Speaker Stumbo. 'q'he joint Implementation Oversight Committee will be alert to any needed cor- rections, and we will make sure that all concerns are addressed." Lawmakers praised the cooperation of the Cabi- tO finish sixth in Class 3A, District 5 nets, agencies, and boards investment of time that substances are dispensed. who-worked together to create new regulations, ed- ucate patients and medical providers, and build the necessary computer infra- structure to support the implementation of the law. HB1 Impact - KASPER enhancements Effective July 20, all medical practitioners who prescribe controlled sub- stances must register to use KASPER and run a KASPER report before prescribing a patient a controlled substance such as Oxyconfin or Xanax. When the law passed in April, KASPER had 7,911 registered accounts. Since then, another 9,137 provid- ers have signed up for the program, a 115 percent in- crease. According to the Cabi- net for Health and Family Services (CHFS), which oversees KASPER, 90 per- cent of all KASPER reports are completed within 15 to 30 seconds. The reports show medical providers what other controlled substances have been pre- scribed to a patient and in what amount. "Some providers wor- ried that running a KASPER report would be cumbersome or time con- suming, but 9 times out of 10, it will take as much time as measuring a pa- tient's blood pressure or recording their insurance information," said Mary Begley, CHFS Inspector General. "It's a very short will become as routine as taking a patient's tempera- ture. A report can provide crucial information that not only may flag a prob- lem user, but may also warn a provider of other- wise unforeseen compli- cations from drug interac- tions." KASPER's cache of pre- scription information will grow more robust as more users add records. Sup- porters say patient care will become more precise as medical providers re- view patient prescription history and know more about existing prescrip- tions. A 2010 CHFS poll of KASPER users noted that 94 percent of medical pro- viders said that the pro- gram is an effective tool in tracking an individual's prescription history, and nearly 94 percent reported satisfaction with the tool. Nearly 9 in 10 KASPER users reported denying a prescription for a con- trolled substance to a pa- tient based on information provided, by a KASPER report. To accommodate the steep increase in KASPER use, CHFS has hired addi- tional staff, implemented system upgrades and ex- panded capacity. Existing regulations provide that all dispens- ers (usually pharmacists) report to KASPER when any Schedule II through Schedule V controlled For the first time, new regulations provide that all prescribers must request a KASPER report before Schedule II, III and some IVs are prescribed. HB1 Impact: Shared In- vestigative Information HB1 requires that when a complaint about pre- scription abuse is lodged with any of several inves- tigative agencies - the At- torney General, Kentucky State Police (KSP), CHFS, or any of the professional licensure boards- that complaint must be shared with the remaining agen- cies. Previously, if KSP was investigating a possible pill mill, the agencies that li- censed that clinic were not required to be notified, nor would they be compelled to contribute information to the case. The Attorney General, KSP, CHFS and the six pro- fessional licensure boards have signed a memoran- dum of understanding to notify the other agencies of prescription complaints within three days of re- ceipt. This will allow the investigators to share in- formation quickly. The six professional boards - Medical Licen- sure, Nursing, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Podiatry and Optometry - are required to share reports with the Attorney General, KSP and CHFS but not required to share among each other. The Bath County Wild- cats will look to make a breakthrough on the gridiron in 2012. Bath County is ranked sixth in the Class 3A, District 5 Preseason Poll published in The Cats' Pause 2012 Kentucky Football Year- book. The Wildcats are hard at work in preseason practice. Bath County opened preseason prac- tice earlier in the month. Bath County, under the direction of veteran head coach Reed Fields, re- turns senior quarterback Clark Kissick (6-2, 240) for the 2012 season. The Wildcats ended the 2011 season 3-7. Bourbon County (8-4) is the preseason favorite in Class 3A, District 5. The Colonels are ranked ahead of Garrard County (12-2), Estill County (2-8), Western Hills (5-6)i Pow- ell County (8-5) and the Wildcats. Even a coaching change couldn't prevent Bourbon County from claiming the top spot in the preseason predicted order of fin- ish. Bourbon County is now under the direction of first-year head coach John Hodge; a longtime. assistant coach. Running back Kentayvus Hop- kins (6-1, 185) is the top returnee for the Colo- nels. Hopkins ranked as the state's second-lead- ing rusher last season, amassing 2,957 yards and scoring 32 touchdowns. Bourbon County, also returns sophomore run- ning back/safety Brent Holman (5-9, 175) and junior linebacker Dakota Mitchell (6-0, 190). Garrard County is ex- pected to give Bourbon County the biggest chal- lenge in District 5. The Golden Lions concluded the 2011 season 12-2, compiling the best record in school history. Quar- terback/defensive back Billy Abney (6-2, 185) and running back/linebacker Garrett Caudill are set to lead the Golden Lions. Estill County is :ranked third in the preseason poll, followed by West- ern Hills (4) and Powell County (5). After post- ing an 8-5 record in 2011, Powell County lost sever- al players via graduation. Bath County defeated non-district opponents West Carter, East Carter and Nicholas County during the 2011 season. The Wildcats defeated a very successful Nicholas County team in a regular- season finale, prevailing 28-22 to snap a five-game losing streak. Struggling in the district, Bath Coun- ty went 0-5, dropping games to Garrard Coun- ty, Western Hills, Powell County, Estill County and Bourbon County. Bath County will open the 2012 season at Flem- ing County on Aug, 17. Kickoff for the season- opener is set for 7:30 p.m. by Cecil Lawson Eddie Mcllvain, head mechanic, and Gary Faudere, asst. mechanic, were both recognized by the Bath County School board Tuesday evening for their recent award given by the Kentucky Department of Education and the Student Transportation Association of Kentucky in June for "Outstanding Maintenance Department." Pictured above are Interim Supt. Steve Mead- ows, Gary Faudere, Eddie Mcllvain, and facilities manager Gary Burnsy" Stewart. CALL And We'll Be There For You! Lowest Rates in the State of Kentucky! INSURANCE